While it's short in gameplay and tutorials, the puzzles in this title are really out of this world. Machinika Museum's backstory involves conducting research on alien objects -- which understandably don't come with instructions. As a result, players need to figure out how to open and activate parts of the devices featured by examining them and looking for clues. Often, the tasks involve using elements you find on a device, such as inserting a battery, entering a code, and aligning two knobs on one side of a machine. Later activities sometimes build on earlier work you've done with previous machines. When you find a relevant item, such as scissors, it's saved on the right hand side of the screen and can be used later by dragging and dropping it on an object, such as a box you need to cut open. Tools you'll use again like the printer, which you can drag items to if they need to be duplicated, appear on the left.
The app gently steers players away from areas that aren't involved in the current challenge with messages that say there's nothing to really look at there, which is helpful. Gamers should generally be able to figure out the next step if they test out the various knobs and other items on devices. But they unfortunately can't get any assistance if they get stuck, though. The dark, atmospheric graphics are a huge plus -- Players can scroll around the room and see the night sky shining in through a window, lights buzz and blink on the printer, and locks turn as they slowly creak open. Unfortunately, youcan only get through the first chapter and part of the second without paying -- after that, you need to purchase the app. Since there are only seven chapters, and the first doesn't take long to complete, that may feel a little steep. But you won't have to deal with excessive advertising or other distractions, so as long as you don't get stuck during play, Machinika Museum can potentially offer an thought-provoking, visually intriguing experience.